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Early Greece

Early Greece

Second Edition

Oswyn Murray

ISBN 9780674221321

Publication date: 01/01/1993

Within the space of three centuries leading up to the great Persian invasion of 480 BC, Greece was transformed from a simple peasant society into a sophisticated civilization that dominated the shores of the Mediterranean from Spain to Syria and from the Crimea to Egypt—a culture whose achievements in the fields of art, science, philosophy, and politics were to establish the canons of the the Western world.

Oswyn Murray places this remarkable development in the context of Mediterranean civilization. He shows how contact with the East catalyzed the transformation of art and religion, analyzes the invention of the alphabet and the conceptual changes it brought, describes the expansions of Greece in trade and colonization, and investigates the relationship between military technology and political progress in the overthrow of aristocratic governments.


  • This book cannot fail to be challenging, and not only to the general reader… [The era covered in this study] was perhaps the most important in Greek history and indeed one of the most significant in all history. Murray…has done it full justice.

    —Paul Cartledge, Times Literary Supplement


  • Oswyn Murray is an emeritus Fellow of Balliol College, University of Oxford, and a leading scholar of the ancient world. He has written widely translated books including Early Greece and The Symposium: Drinking Greek Style and is the coeditor of The Oxford History of the Classical World.

Book Details

  • 368 pages
  • 0-15/16 x 5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press